By Kevin Lawler, Vice President, Pelican BioThermal
Although preventing temperature excursions is one of the most common objectives we hear from customers looking for thermal protection shipper packaging, it isn’t the only cold chain challenge faced by those looking to transport pharmaceuticals and other temperature sensitive payloads. Consideration of these three additional pain points our customers look to overcome are crucial when evaluating temperature-controlled packaging:
(1) Decreasing costs overall
As in any area of business accountability; organizations seeking thermal protection packaging also seek to reduce overall costs, and cost-effective packaging and shipping solution choices that make a big impact on cost reduction.
Shippers with less weight and greater volumetric payload efficiency can offer the financial advantages of lower transport costs, as a result of less shipping weight. In addition, reusable cold chain packaging solutions, like our Crēdo Cube™, help reduce the cost per use.
(2) Complying with regulatory requirements
Increased regulations published by the European Union (EU) in its 2013 GDP Guidelines are relevant not only to those companies based in Europe (the EU is the largest producer of pharma products in the world, and a net exporter to the US and elsewhere), but also anyone looking to do business globally.
In order to ensure successful cold chain lanes, manufacturers and others in the medical and pharmaceutical industry must ensure that shippers are compliant with global industry standards and recommendations such as the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, The Parenteral Drug Association (PDA), The World Health Organization (WHO), The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and The International Safe Transit Association (ISTA), as well as EU’s strict GDP, quality assurance and health and safety standards.
Manufacturers of temperature-sensitive packaging can help customers meet these standards by providing a range of thermal tests and qualification processes to ensure our packing solutions meet regulatory requirements. At Pelican BioThermal, our global manufacturing and testing locations include full-service ISTA compliant certified thermal testing labs, calibrated environmental chambers and other equipment to ensure global regulatory compliance.
(3) Establishing a foothold in emerging markets
Research conducted by Healthcare Commerce Media Corp. in its BioPharma Cold Chain 2014 Sourcebook, predicts cold-chain logistics spend will expand from about $7 billion in 2012, and $8 billion in 2014, to more than $10 billion by 2018. The biggest drivers of cold chain logistics growth over the next few years will be the continued development, approval and market penetration of biosimilar-derived drugs, and the expansion in both need/usage and production of these drugs and other cold chain products in emerging markets. Asia is expected to account for the largest regional share, more than $1 billion of cold chain growth through 2018.
Expanding into emerging markets can be especially challenging when temperature-sensitive, high value payload shipments are involved. Globally networked manufacturers and marketers of thermal protection packaging solutions can provide valuable guidance in addressing the complex global life sciences supply chain in emerging markets. Our global network of manufacturing and asset optimization services, in addition to close partnerships with 3rd party logistics organizations, are just a few of the effective ways we guide customers seeking to establish integrity in emerging markets.
Preventing temperature excursions is not the only thing those looking for temperature-controlled packaging consider, however it does impact all other considerations. As pharmaceutical and other medical supply companies seek to establish cold chain supply lanes in emerging markets, reduce overall costs and ensure regulatory compliance, they should seek out temperature-controlled packaging that helps them realize the most basic fit for purpose goal: reliable thermal protection.
About the Author
Kevin Lawler is the vice president of sales at Pelican BioThermal. With over 25 years of sales leadership experience, Kevin has a strong history in building and leading sales organizations capable of producing strong and predictable growth. Prior to joining Minnesota Thermal Science (now Pelican BioThermal) in 2009, he was a leader in the growth of Computech Resources into a $35M technology and consulting services company, positioning it to be acquired by Logicalis, Inc. a global, $1B technology organization. Kevin earned an MBA from the University of Montana and resides with his family in St. Paul, Minnesota.